The first Boeing 747 freighter has joined the Qatar Airways Cargo fleet having completed its first flight from Doha to Hong Kong this week. The addition of the Boeing B747-400BCF heavy cargo aircraft, and its 112.5 tonne capacity, will enable the carier to satisfy growing demand for outsized freight transportation from customers investing in significant infrastructure projects in the Middle East and throughout the world.
One of the largest palletised cargo aircraft available in the market, the Boeing B747F will provide belly freight capacity and main cargo deck capacity with 39 ULD positions. The pressurised cargo cabin means that the aircraft is suitable to transport freight of all kinds and can provide a temperature control range from 4° to 30° degrees Celsius.
Livestock and horses, perishables, heavy machinery, oversized equipment, oil and gas equipment and humanitarian and relief aid can all be transported worldwide on this aircraft, which is suitable for long haul cargo flights of up to 10 hours.
This aircraft is actually an interim arrival and will be replaced by a 747-400F with a nose-loading door to its in October 2015 providing even more flexibility to satisfy customers’ oversized cargo transportation demands. Flexibility in loading is a key feature of the Boeing B747 freighter - with a large side cargo door the aircraft can be loaded quickly and easily, whether the cargo is made up of standard containers and pallets or nonstandard, outsized objects, while the nose-loading door enables longer pieces to be loaded onto the aircraft.
“A dedicated charter aircraft will enable Qatar Airways Cargo to satisfy growing demand from our customers for capacity in the ad-hoc charter market,” said Ulrich Ogiermann, chief officer cargo, Qatar Airways. “The addition of the B747 freighter will enable further flexibility by supplementing our existing scheduled services as and when required.”
Qatar Airways Cargo continues to grow: it confirmed an order for an additional four Boeing B777Fs at the Paris Air Show in June, increasing its outstanding fleet order to eight Boeing B777Fs and two Airbus A330Fs “We have achieved our status as the world’s fifth largest cargo carrier by adopting a market-responsive strategy that is strengthened by our global network and expanding fleet,” said Ogiermann.
The carrier’s QR Charter cargo service offers global charter solutions to any part of the world, including full, split and combination charter services. The cargo airline operates from Hamad International Airport, Doha, where its cargo terminal has a capacity to process 1.4 million tonnes of cargo per year and can accommodate 11 wide-body freighters with 42 airside loading docks to facilitate the swift and efficient transfer of cargo in to and out of Qatar.